Orléanais (ôrlāänā´), region and former province, N central France, on both sides of the Loire River. Orléans, the historic capital, Chartres, and Blois are the chief cities. The region includes Loiret, Loir-et-Cher, and parts of Eure-et-Loir and Yonne depts. Beauce in the north, Little Beauce in the west, and Gâtinais in the east are rich agricultural districts; the large ancient forest of Orléans (northeast of the city) occupies the center of the region. The fertile Loire valley yields fruits, vegetables, and grapes and is dotted by many fine châteaux, notably Blois and Chambord. South of the Loire bend is the swampy Sologne Plain, which has been considerably improved by drainage. The nucleus of the Orléanais has been part of the royal domain since the time of Hugh Capet (10th cent.); see Capetians. Although Orléanais is one of the areas of France least affected by Roman civilization, there are abundant ruins of fortresses and churches from the Carolingian period (c.7th cent.).
Questia, a part of Gale, Cengage Learning. www.questia.com
Publication information: Article title: Orléanais. Encyclopedia title: The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. © 2012 The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia © 2012, Columbia University Press. Licensed from Columbia University Press. Used with the permission of Columbia University Press. All Rights Reserved. Publisher: The Columbia University Press. Place of publication: Not available. Publication year: 2013.
This material is protected by copyright and, with the exception of fair use, may not be further copied, distributed or transmitted in any form or by any means.